Having a case dismissed does not mean you are free and clear. A dismissal often means that there is just not enough evidence to charge in the case. However, if more evidence is brought to light, those charges can be revisited again.
Expungements are very different and can occur for a variety reasons. They essentially destroy a criminal conviction or seal them from state or federal record. They don’t mean you were forgiven, but they can assist someone whom is struggling with getting a job, volunteering, accessing resources, or dealing with the ramifications of a crime on their record. There is some confusion when it comes to what this means and what the outcome will be in the case of expungement.
Expungements in Texas can be found in the Chapter 55 of the Texas code of Criminal Procedure, which explains what the procedures are for "arrest records, court records and criminal history record information".
The Texas Bar states that an arrest for a crime that was never charged, a criminal charge which was dismissed, certain qualifying misdemeanor juvenile offenses, conviction of a minor for certain alcohol offenses, conviction for failure to attend school, and various other reasons are eligible for expunction (expungement). How they also say that not all "individuals with records eligible for expunction" listed "qualify to receive" one. There are also certain time limits which will need to be looked at to determine if it is possible.
If you would be interested in learning more about this, or would like to set up a time to discuss particulars in your case to see what options are available for you, please give us a call.